Two Virginia middle school students were given long-term suspensions in a unanimous decision Tuesday morning after shooting airsoft guns near one of the students' homes.
Seventh graders Aidan Clark and Khalid Caraballo are suspended until June of next year, and may face being expelled altogether, WAVY reported. The children were suspended for possession, handling and use of a firearm.
Caraballo and Clark shot two other friends who were with them while playing with the guns as they waited for the school bus. Because the bus stop is technically on school grounds, Larkspur Middle School said it had the right to suspend them.
The two seventh graders said they never went to the bus stop; they fired the airsoft guns while on Caraballo's private property, 70 yards away.
"We see the bus come, we put the gun down," Caraballo said. "We did not take the airsoft gun to the bus stop. We did not take the gun to school."
Airsoft guns fire small, spring-loaded plastic pellets. They are generally considered safer than BB guns, which fire copper pellets.
Seeing the kids playing with the toy guns, a neighbor called 911, according to the Washington Post. In the 911 call, the neighbor admitted she knew the guns were not real.
"This is not a real [gun], but it makes people uncomfortable," she told a dispatcher. "I know that it makes me [uncomfortable], as a mom, to see a boy pointing a gun."
"And you know what, do have someone contact me and tell me what was done," she continued. The dispatcher informed the woman that police would not contact her but could talk to her at the scene. The neighbor said in the call she would not be on the scene.
"It is my sincere hope that they will learn important life lessons; the most important being that there will be consequences when they do things that can result in harm to another person," Principal Matthew Delaney said in a written statement.
Caraballo said he will now have to attend an alternative school.
"It's terrible," the seventh grader said. "I won't get the chance to go to a good college. It's on your school record. The school said I had possession of a firearm. They aren't going to ask me any questions. They are going to think it was a real gun, and I was trying to hurt someone. They will say 'oh, we can't accept you.' "
Police said no one will be charged in the case.